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Time to shift gears towards the front stage - Sponge mode on :)

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
Well, this DIY bug is really addictive, lol. After recently completing my sub setup, I am now looking at moving on towards a new front stage.

Current setup:

Axiom M80 mains, M60 center, QS8 heights, M2i wides, QS8 surrounds.

Thoughts:

I really like what Axiom has to offer for what I spent. For a completed store bought speaker, they are affordable and offer a tremendous value for their performance. The QS8's are really an excellent design and lend to flexible placement and a great dispersion. They also fit into narrower rooms well. I am dealing with a room that is just over 10' 6" wide, so obtrusive speakers are not ideal. The M80's have the ability to play loud, while staying clean. They image fairly well and don't have any glaring shortcomings (relatively speaking). smile.gif

Hopes:

So why upgrade? Well the Axioms can be a little on the bright side at louder listening levels. They also come across a little on the thin side. No matter how much I play around with placement, they just don't image as well as I'd like. And well, why not? biggrin.gif

These new speakers will be powered off my receiver for a bit, so they need to be easy to drive and be able to sing without a ton of power. I just sold my Earthquake Cinenova and have been pleasantly surprised with them being driven off my 3009, so I'd like to stick with this if possible. I have very good hearing and rarely find myself getting much louder than -5. I'm not interested in reaching ear bleeding levels.

My breakdown is about 70% HT/ 30% music. I am pretty critical with my music listening. I really enjoy my hi res music and while I know you can't have your cake and eat it too, I would like a speaker that's great with HT and excellent with music.

They also need to be able to match up pretty close to my Axioms. I won't be replacing my height, wide, or surround due to space constraints.

As much as we all love overkill, it's really not required for my space. First row is at 12' and second row is 17'. So dual 15's or the like is really not required. Just a solid step up from my M80's.

I love a challenge, but this setup needs to be proven and easy to replicate. Not looking at forging new paths with crossovers etc. I'll leave that to you audio gurus.

Suspects. smile.gif

The group buy with BMS is nice timing and if possible would be nice to build something off of this.

AE. I really like these drivers and would love to implement them if possible. (Like the idea of a SEOS12/15 mated up to a TD12/15x).

I'm not sure on what size to go with, so that is open. I'm thinking a 12 would be plenty, but 15 is certainly open. That is about as large as I want to go.


I love knowledge and am open to any and all discussions that would lead to a greater understanding of what will work, and why. smile.gif

Travis
post #2 of 36
You're on the same page as me. Dual SI 18" nearing completion, and now my fronts have to match in performance.

Bwaslo created a crossover schematic for the TD12x and SEOS 12. That was my starting point. Beastaudio's build piqued my interest on this woofer. It just seems nicer and with less compromises than most of the woofers used on the other seos designs on diyaudiogroup.

John from AE helped me model a tower in my TD12x build thread. It will use the 40" baffle from Eric's site, and hopefully if it can be done, he can make the woofer cuts to save time. John suggested a 32hz tune, which requires a long slot port from the l x w I chose. It can go full range, and it can hit 122db with 750w to it. The TD12x woofer really takes advantage of the bigger box.

There really aren't too many SEOS tower builds that I can find. This is the best config that I've found for myself so far, and it might help you out. Anything else in a tower might need to be modeled.
post #3 of 36
If you're not already dead set on a SEOS system, also take a strong look at 4pi trio upgraded with JBL 2226's or the 3pi upgraded with AE TD12S's of up front.
post #4 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Simonian View Post

If you're not already dead set on a SEOS system, also take a strong look at 4pi trio upgraded with JBL 2226's or the 3pi upgraded with AE TD12S's of up front.

I looked at those Scott, but haven't seen a lot of builds with them (that I noticed anyway), so I passed them off. Maybe it's worth taking a second look at. I'm not dead set on a SEOS, but I do like the reviews they have gotten lately.

Edit: I'm not sure at $2400.00 for the set I want to go that route, lol. I'd like to keep this build around 1800.00 tops if possible. If I need to stretch I will, but would prefer not to.
post #5 of 36
There aren't as many builds because it is a slightly more expensive build overall. But... sometimes you have to pay up for a superior product. biggrin.gif Plus, why build what everyone else is building? Be original.

You can knock off quite a bit of that by finding some used JBL's on eBay or in the classifieds.
post #6 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

I looked at those Scott, but haven't seen a lot of builds with them (that I noticed anyway), so I passed them off. Maybe it's worth taking a second look at. I'm not dead set on a SEOS, but I do like the reviews they have gotten lately.

Edit: I'm not sure at $2400.00 for the set I want to go that route, lol. I'd like to keep this build around 1800.00 tops if possible. If I need to stretch I will, but would prefer not to.

Scott's right, drivers can be found cheap.
I found all of my 2226's for less then 200 each, all original cones, and the Denovo-360 can be substituted for the DE-250.
Lots of savings to be had.

Soon enough when I get time I'll post a thread.

I went from crappy technics tower speakers to:

3x 4pi's
2x jbl 8340's
sealed 18" zv3 (almost done)
and an inuke3000 for power / dsp
post #7 of 36
Lots of Pi builds a while ago, like everything else on AVS they ebb and flow on popularity. I remember when everyone was building LLTs, now its mostly multiple sealed.

I love my 4 Pi's with the JBL and B&C upgrade. For surrounds I may go with a SEOS or the JBL cinema surround. I was afraid of going the horn(waveguide)/CD route, but will never go back to low efficiency speakers.
post #8 of 36
It is funny how certain designs trend. Often it has more to do with fashion than any particular innovation, exceptions include the SEOS waveguide. You don't see as many Pi kits being built because the DIY sound group exists, the SEOS exists and the kits to made it all work exist. When it comes to subs, the trend toward multiple sealed units has me baffled (no pun intended). What I find more encouraging is the adoption of horns, that seems to be less of a trend and more of a growing realization how dynamic and real-sounding good horns are.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NWCgrad View Post

Lots of Pi builds a while ago, like everything else on AVS they ebb and flow on popularity. I remember when everyone was building LLTs, now its mostly multiple sealed.

I love my 4 Pi's with the JBL and B&C upgrade. For surrounds I may go with a SEOS or the JBL cinema surround. I was afraid of going the horn(waveguide)/CD route, but will never go back to low efficiency speakers.
post #9 of 36
The price on a certain kit could be raised for a day if that makes anyone feel they're getting something better by spending more. biggrin.gif

There's a SEOS speaker design for the JBL, it just wasn't posted. It was designed by the same guy that did the Fusion-15 which uses the 15" B&C woofer. But the woofers sound so similar we decided it didn't make sense for a kit to cost an extra couple hundred dollars or more just for the woofer. If there was a kit that cost a couple hundred more, I figured it should go towards woofers that were better than the JBL.

But if anyone wants to spend the extra money, maybe the kit should be listed. I've got the CNC cut baffles for it already.
post #10 of 36
Thread Starter 
I'm a huge fan of the JBL's. I've run a few of their drivers in SQ vehicle installs. I've also heard nothing but good things about AE's quality (just not sure I want to play the waiting game).

Erich, do you see a reason to upgrade to the 2226 over the B&C driver? How does the midbass compare?

So here are the 3 proposed options.

First is the easy tried and true

Zephyr or Sentinal
Price 390 to 406 + materials
Total 1300.00 ish

Second Option


H290c waveguide 50.00
Pi xover with upgraded caps 175.00
B&C DE250 CD 128.00
JBL 2226H 200.00 used
Total 2000.00 ish

Third Option

Seos12 waveguide 28.00
DNA360 CD 75.50 (possible upgrade to the BA750 if worth it)
AE TD12X 300.00
xover with upgraded caps 175.00
Total 2000.00 ish

So based on my requirements in the OP, which direction would you steer me? Are the 2nd and 3rd options worth the price of admission over the first?
post #11 of 36
Bass Addict,

I'm going to be building 5 SEOS 12's with TD12M's in the next couple of weeks (crossing fingers). That being said, if I didn't already own the TD12M's, I'd probably go with the Tempest or Zephyr kits since they're ready to go. I'm also looking into doing SI or HO dual opposed 18's or a horn sub.

Peter
post #12 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pgwalsh View Post

Bass Addict,

I'm going to be building 5 SEOS 12's with TD12M's in the next couple of weeks (crossing fingers). That being said, if I didn't already own the TD12M's, I'd probably go with the Tempest or Zephyr kits since they're ready to go. I'm also looking into doing SI or HO dual opposed 18's or a horn sub.

Peter

I want to like the AE's but am leary about the wait time. It's not like I need them right away, but you know how it goes when you get a build in your head. smile.gif

It's back to the diminishing return on investments. Are the JBL or AE going to sound 35% better than the B&C? Are any of them going to sound significantly better than my M80's?
post #13 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

I want to like the AE's but am leary about the wait time. It's not like I need them right away, but you know how it goes when you get a build in your head. smile.gif

It's back to the diminishing return on investments. Are the JBL or AE going to sound 35% better than the B&C? Are any of them going to sound significantly better than my M80's?

My AE woofers have an ETA of early March. Plenty of time to get everything together.

The TD12X hits the same frequency response as that JBL woofer, and has a higher xmax, for $200 less. TD12X has the highest xmax of these 3 woofers.

The B&C has a higher sensitivity, but won't go as low.

If you don't want a low tune in a tower config, the B&C sentinel kit should work fine. I want looooow with excursion, so the TD12X works best for me.
post #14 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bhazard View Post

My AE woofers have an ETA of early March. Plenty of time to get everything together.

The TD12X hits the same frequency response as that JBL woofer, and has a higher xmax, for $200 less. TD12X has the highest xmax of these 3 woofers.

New to new, yes. I have run across quite a few of these used for under 200.00. So 600 compared to 900 for the trio.
Quote:
The B&C has a higher sensitivity, but won't go as low.

If you don't want a low tune in a tower config, the B&C sentinel kit should work fine. I want looooow with excursion, so the TD12X works best for me.

That's a good point. I'm not thinking I really need crazy low extension out of these. They'll be crossed at 80hz for movies so there's probably not a need with my sub stage. For 2 ch music I usually listen in pure mode and don't really need crazy extension there either. I'm fairly happy with my M80's set to large. For hi res music I leave the sub going but use music mode on my SMS1 which drops the sub level a few db's.

I'm mostly after a huge soundstage with clarity and imaging (picking instruments out is much more important than overall extension), and less fatigue.
post #15 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post


I'm mostly after a huge soundstage with clarity and imaging (picking instruments out is much more important than overall extension), and less fatigue.

Any of the SEOS designs will provide what you are looking for.

In the JBL thread, someone picked up a pair of the 190 towers like mine ($180 each at newegg now) who had Axiom M80s. The 190s have a controlled directivity waveguide with a dome. They have incredible imaging, and he liked the soundstage better than his M80s. The M80s had better midbass and overall SQ, and it should for thousands more.

The SEOS waveguide should expand upon that, so it will be a huge difference for you that you'll love. I like controlled directivity, and I miss having horns. best of both worlds.
post #16 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bhazard View Post

Any of the SEOS designs will provide what you are looking for.

In the JBL thread, someone picked up a pair of the 190 towers like mine ($180 each at newegg now) who had Axiom M80s. The 190s have a controlled directivity waveguide with a dome. They have incredible imaging, and he liked the soundstage better than his M80s. The M80s had better midbass and overall SQ, and it should for thousands more.

The SEOS waveguide should expand upon that, so it will be a huge difference for you that you'll love. I like controlled directivity, and I miss having horns. best of both worlds.

Thanks, good information.

I'm happy going with any of these as long as they build upon what I currently have. The Axioms will be impossible to sell so they'll just go in my master bedroom, so no recouping of funds here like I was able to do on my sub build.
post #17 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

Are the JBL or AE going to sound 35% better than the B&C? ?

Not even close to 35% better. You might want to send MTG-90 a PM and ask him. I believe he said he wasn't sure there was a difference. He said if there was it was extremely small. But you might want to ask him either way.
post #18 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bhazard View Post

Any of the SEOS designs will provide what you are looking for.

This
Ive built 2 sets so far (Tempest 12 and Fusion Max 10s) (3rd set on the way) they both are extremely detailed and clear, the tempests simply play lower
post #19 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sibuna View Post

This
Ive built 2 sets so far (Tempest 12 and Fusion Max 10s) (3rd set on the way) they both are extremely detailed and clear, the tempests simply play lower

How does the Zephyr compare to the Tempest?
post #20 of 36
i haven't heard the zephyr but from what i understand it should sound similar, but it can take more power and play slightly lower
post #21 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Erich H View Post

The price on a certain kit could be raised for a day if that makes anyone feel they're getting something better by spending more. biggrin.gif

There's a SEOS speaker design for the JBL, it just wasn't posted. It was designed by the same guy that did the Fusion-15 which uses the 15" B&C woofer. But the woofers sound so similar we decided it didn't make sense for a kit to cost an extra couple hundred dollars or more just for the woofer. If there was a kit that cost a couple hundred more, I figured it should go towards woofers that were better than the JBL.

But if anyone wants to spend the extra money, maybe the kit should be listed. I've got the CNC cut baffles for it already.

When I built the SEOS was just getting started as availability of the QSC waveguide was iffy. Hard to believe the JBL driver cost has since risen by over $400/pr. No way I would go the extra cash with all the other drivers and designs now available. My JBLs were a hair under $300/ea, I don't know why the price has since skyrocketed. They are a nice driver - but ...
post #22 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sibuna View Post

i haven't heard the zephyr but from what i understand it should sound similar, but it can take more power and play slightly lower

Quote:
Originally Posted by NWCgrad View Post

When I built the SEOS was just getting started as availability of the QSC waveguide was iffy. Hard to believe the JBL driver cost has since risen by over $400/pr. No way I would go the extra cash with all the other drivers and designs now available. My JBLs were a hair under $300/ea, I don't know why the price has since skyrocketed. They are a nice driver - but ...

Thanks guys. Talking with Erich is sounds like the Tempest/Sentinal is the way to go with a little better midbass. I don't need the extension as most of my use will be HT, and crossed at 80.

It sounds like the DNA360 is about as good as it gets for anywhere in that price range, and that's the most important thing for me. I really need the wall of sound and clarity to be top notch.
post #23 of 36
the jbl 2226 has better inductance control which gives it about 10db less distortion in the midrange vs the b&c. whether that is worth the price, who knows.

the biggest difference is in the mid-bass. the decent pro 15's tend to have about a 6db sensitivity advantage vs. something like the axiom m80's and more than 10db max spl if you have the power. that results in much better dynamics, less compression, less distortion, and just better sound. :-)

even a pair of really competent 6.5" woofers are going to be slaughtered by something like the b&c or the jbl.
post #24 of 36
Thread Starter 
Well I'm getting closer to a winner.

I've decided I'm going to stick with 12's as there's just no reason to go any bigger in the size room they are in.

So it's down to the SEOS12/TD12M combo or the Fusion Tempest. I'll let you guys make the call. biggrin.gif
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

Well I'm getting closer to a winner.

I've decided I'm going to stick with 12's as there's just no reason to go any bigger in the size room they are in.

So it's down to the SEOS12/TD12M combo or the Fusion Tempest. I'll let you guys make the call. biggrin.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post


I'm going to stick with 12's...

there's just no reason to go any bigger

stick with 12's

no reason to go any bigger

stick with 12's

stick with 12's

stick with 12's





I outta club you and eat your bones!
post #26 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Simonian View Post






I outta club you and eat your bones!

Lulz. The problem I am going to have is with width. I'm trying to stick close to a 30 degree main setup and I will be well over that with 12's. The 15's will put me pretty close to the outside walls and pushing 45 degrees. Now I still might be able to get away with that due to the controlled directionality of the waveguide.
post #27 of 36
I'd go with the tempests. It's within your budget. Will be an excellent upgrade. If you're like me and are content with responsible decisions, then that's what I'd do. Now if you're the type to alway wonder and can't stand leaving anything on the table, then blow the money on the extra nice woofers.
post #28 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuxedocivic View Post

I'd go with the tempests. It's within your budget. Will be an excellent upgrade. If you're like me and are content with responsible decisions, then that's what I'd do. Now if you're the type to alway wonder and can't stand leaving anything on the table, then blow the money on the extra nice woofers.

Wow, there is a voice of reason in here. biggrin.gif

I'm thinking you're probably right. I've been very content with my Axioms, so if it's a noticeable step up as everyone says it will be, I'll be perfectly content.

It sounds like the AE's will integrate well with the Tempest Xover, so worse case scenario down the road I can always upgrade drivers. I'm just praying these play nice sonically with my Axioms height, wide, and surrounds. I'll be bummed if there's a big difference there.
post #29 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bass addict View Post

Lulz. The problem I am going to have is with width. I'm trying to stick close to a 30 degree main setup and I will be well over that with 12's. The 15's will put me pretty close to the outside walls and pushing 45 degrees. Now I still might be able to get away with that due to the controlled directionality of the waveguide.

Heheheh. I had to unleash the overpowering ogre just for fun. biggrin.gif

I doubt you would not be happy with either of the 12" builds. I'd opt for the AE design if you can wait for however long it will be to get the drivers. Go with the best that you can get. smile.gif
post #30 of 36
From my experience, and those of others, 45 degrees is the preferred position. I admit it looks a bit funky but the imaging is great with a huge sweetspot.
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